Vertical balers are common in stores in Texas and across the country. These balers play a vital role in organization and cleanliness, as they allow employees to reduce the sizes of the boxes that deliver goods. Still, like with other pieces of heavy machinery, vertical balers can be extremely dangerous.
Recently, according to OSHA, an employee in South Carolina died when attempting to repair a vertical baler. In that incident, the worker was on top of the machine when it activated. Sadly, the man fell into the baler where he lost consciousness due to a lack of oxygen.
Safety tips when working with vertical balers
Even though working with a vertical baler may be part of your job duties, you should always remember the machine may kill you or cause you to suffer catastrophic injuries. Therefore, it is important to respect the baler.
Here are some tips that may keep you safe when working with or near a vertical baler:
- Undergo safety training before using the baler
- Wear goggles, gloves and other pieces of protective gear
- Report damage and other problems immediately
- Disconnect the baler’s power supply before attempting to make repairs, remove jams or clean the machine
- Remove the baler’s key switch when you are not using the baler
- Ensure the baler undergoes regular mechanical inspections
Your recovery strategy
If you have a workplace accident involving a vertical baler, you may be vulnerable to a variety of injuries. It is critical both to report your accident and to seek medical treatment. Your prognosis, of course, depends on the nature of your injuries.
Ultimately, you may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits to help you make ends meet while you work through your recovery.